Summer means lots of fun vacation travel, so hope you’ll visit new cities and see new sights. But on your way, be sure to notice some of the ways these seven airports are becoming greener than ever before. Prepare for takeoff!
This small airport has prioritized going green for many years, starting in 2011 when they upgraded to LED lighting for both the interiors and exteriors of the airport. They also continue to work on installing a geothermal heating and cooling system, as well as complete the roof mounting of 738 solar panels. They also installed skylights to cut down energy costs by utilizing natural light as much as possible.
Bringing in more natural light was a major part of the renovations of this Alabama airport, which were completed in 2014. They also employed additional green updates to the airport to save on overall output and costs, including a high-efficiency HVAC system, increased insulation, a solar water heating system, a rainwater harvesting system, a hydroponic garden, and regionally-sourced and recycled materials. The savings were in the $30,000 range and the airport was ultimately honored with a LEED certification.
In 2017 this Nordic airport achieved carbon neutrality through a series of methods and technologies that made it the 34th carbon neutral airport in the world. The airport first began by using renewable diesel fuel in vehicles operating at the airport. They are also in the process of completing the largest airport solar power plant in the Nordic area, which will supply almost 10% of all the electricity required by the new terminal extensions at the aviation hub.
Hartsfield-Jackson is one of the nation’s busiest airports, with 104 million passengers making their way through the hub in 2017. Their sustainability goals originated in 2011, and they’ve been making progress ever since, including changing all the lighting to LEDs, upgrading the building management systems, and solar panel installations. Their long-term goals include moving to 100% electricity from clean and renewable energy and LEED certification.
This local airport was recognized in 2017 by the Better Buildings Challenge partners for its successful energy-efficient upgrade achievements, which included adding advanced lighting controls and upgrading the mechanical and lighting systems located throughout the interior of the terminal, as well as installing LED lighting in the outdoor terminal parking lot. The airport was also ahead of the green curve in 2003 when they installed an 8,000 square foot green roof, the largest at the time. So far, these updates have achieved for the airport 63% in energy savings.
The Indianapolis airport’s green achievements began with the construction of a new terminal in 2008, which enabled it to become the first LEED-certified airport campus in the U.S. The airport also boasts the largest solar-energy generating operation on airport property in the world, which generates enough electricity to power 3,675 average American homes per year. Their efforts also extend to other areas of sustainability, including opening a bee apiary on the airport’s 9,000-acre property, as well as its recent launch of the nation’s largest airport electric shuttle bus fleet.
The Greater Toronto Airport Authority started its green initiatives for Pearson in 2006 that has led to cutting its greenhouse gas emissions in half. Solutions include LED retrofitting, an energy efficient baggage system, and gated planes relying on the airport’s auxiliary power supply rather than letting the engine run. They also installed a 15-hive bee apiary on the airport’s property that houses 50,000 to 60,000 bees and produce 60lbs of honey annually.